I've noticed that speakers from India shift the stress in some words such as 'adjective', 'sentence' or 'tendency'. They normally stress the second syllable and not the first one as most people are used to. Is there any particular reason for this? Is it a common tendency (never better said) amongst the Indians?
My experience with speakers of various Indian languages (and there are perhaps 50 languages with a million speakers apiece on that Tower-of-Babel of a continent; my sample was fewer than five) is that word-stress is less important than it is in English. I remember one exchange that went like this:
Me: "Hari, do you pronounce your name HA-ri or ha-RI?"
Hari: (blankly) "It's pronounced 'Hari'."
Contrast that with Vietnamese, where stress and tone are almost everything. I once confused the name of my tour-guide's friend Bo (middle tone, something like bought) with bò (falling tone, a little like but, and meaning "cow"). The guide and all her other friends thought that was hilarious. They were still repeating to each other and laughing uproariously when I flew home. The unfortunate Bo might still called "Cow" to this day.
Pronunciation of many words in English vary worldwide. In English, words often have primary (and secondary) accents on the second (and fourth) syllables. See "pronunciation" and "computer." Perhaps Indian pronunciation has applied that construction to these words? Brits and Americans don't agree on which syllable to stress in "incomparable," for instance.